Senate OKs San Antonio mayor as housing secretary

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Senate has easily confirmed San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro to head the Department of Housing and Urban Development.

Wednesday's 71-26 vote makes the 39-year-old Castro one of the highest-ranking Hispanics in government.

Castro's elevation to President Barack Obama's Cabinet also should raise the national profile of a politician considered a contender for the 2016 vice presidential nomination.

Castro is the son of a single mother. He has a law degree from Harvard and is a three-term mayor of Texas' second largest city. Obama picked him to deliver the keynote address at the 2012 Democratic National Convention.

Castro will replace Shaun Donovan as housing secretary. Obama has picked Donovan to become White House budget chief.

Castro's twin brother, Joaquin, is a congressman who represents much of the San Antonio area.

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